Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,502 pages of information and 233,941 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Gresham and Craven

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June 1888. Combination automatic injector.
June 1888. Injectors.
January 1896.
1906. Vacuum Brake Ejector.
1906. Section Views of Vacuum Brake Ejector
December 1907.
July 1908.
July 1908.
September 1913.
February 1929.
May 1929.
December 1929. Injectors.
Gresham and Craven sewing machine
Sewing machine detail - serial number 24819.
Sewing machine detail.
c1938. Valves in Steam Locomotive.
c1938. Valves in Steam Locomotive.
c1938. Valves in Steam Locomotive.
Part of the former works in Salford, now converted to offices. River Irwell in foreground
No: 3404. Exhibit at Millicent Museum.
No: 3404. (Details). Exhibit at Millicent Museum.
Combined Vacuum Ejector and Brake Valve at Ingrow Loco Museum and Workshop, Keighley and Worth Valley Railway
Closer view of K&WVR exhibit

Gresham and Craven of Craven Iron Works, Salford and Walkden, Manchester

1869/70 Thomas Craven joined John Spier Heron and James Gresham at Gresham and Heron

At some point the firm became Heron, Gresham and Craven, possibly involving James Craven[1].

1875 J. S. Heron left Heron, Gresham and Craven due to ill health; company became Gresham and Craven, sewing machine makers and makers of Giffard's injector; Thomas Craven was one of the partners.

c.1884 Sewing machine production ceased; the firm concentrated on other engineering projects.

By 1887 the company was making and fitting continuous brakes on railways in Great Britain and abroad[2]

1889 Company formed to convert the engineering business of James Gresham and Thomas Craven. [3]

1892 Trains for the Belfast and Northern Counties Railway started to be fitted with Johnson & Clayton's patent carriage heaters, made by Gresham & Craven. Hot water from the locomotive boiler was passed through pipes under the seats. The water was returned to the tender. The passengers were able to regulate the heat by means of covers for the pipes.[4]

1894 Self-adjusting sand-pipe nozzle for locomotives. [5]

1890s Spring wire mattresses patented by John Spier Heron continued to be produced.

1911 Manufacturer of Vacuum Automatic Brakes for the railways[6]. Also see Vacuum Brake Co.

1935 See Gresham and Craven:1935 Review

1936 Greshams and Vacuum Brake Co Ltd was removed from the register of companies[7]

1937 Engineers. [8]

By 1959 was a subsidiary of Westinghouse Brake and Signal Co[9]

1961 British Transport Commission asked the company to stop production of vacuum cylinders which were used on mineral wagons as it had sufficient stock and the wagon building programme was being wound down[10]

1963 Motor Show exhibitor. Volume production of precision parts and assemblies. [11]

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. Obituary of Tom Craven
  2. Harry Gresham's proposal for membership of I Mech E
  3. The Engineer of 22nd Feb 1889 p175
  4. Irish News and Belfast Morning News, 12 December 1892
  5. The Engineer of 4th May 1894 p378
  6. Bradshaw’s Railway Manual 1911
  7. London Gazette 16 June 1936
  8. 1937 The Aeroplane Directory of the Aviation and Allied Industries
  9. The Times Feb 17, 1959
  10. The Times, Oct 10, 1961
  11. 1963 Motor Show
  • Heron, Gresham and Craven by David Best [1]